Medical History

Ignaz Semmelweis and the War on Handwashing

Ignaz Semmelweis made a connection between hand hygiene and the prevention of childbed fever in the 19th century. He wasn’t taken seriously then, but today he’s known as everything from the father of infection control to the conqueror of childbed fever.

Author Interview: Kathryn Lougheed on Tuberculosis

Tuberculosis is often thought of as a disease of the past, but it remains a problem in many parts of the world. Microbiologist and author Kathryn Lougheed joins Holly for a discussion of TB’s long history and the need to address it in the modern age.

Mary Breckinridge and the Frontier Nursing Service

We have talked before on the show about pioneers who advanced the medical field specifically as it relates to infants, and today’s subject is definitely another to add to that list. But, there are some problematic elements to her story.

Unearthed! in 2017, Part 1

In our annual recap, we walk through what's been literally and figuratively unearthed in 2017, including anticlimactic headlines, shipwrecks, medical finds, and a collection we've nicknamed "We told you so."

Three Astonishing Belles

This episode features three unique women, all of whom are notable in their own way. The two things they have in common: They each have a surprising aspect to their stories, and they each have the name Belle.

Six Impossible Episodes by Request

This installation of Six Impossible Episodes is a bit of a hodge podge, with several oft-requested topics. Included are Olive Yang, the Silent Parade of 1917, Glencoe Massacre, Marion Downs, Lena Himmelstein and the Great Windham Frog Fight of 1754.

Emin Pasha, né Eduard Schnitzer (Part 1)

Emin Pasha's story connects to so many other historical things, particularly in the context of both the Ottoman Empire and African history. First, we'll talk about his time in Albania and how he made his way to Africa and took a new name.

The Kallikaks and the Eugenicists

Spurred by the same fears, prejudices and societal issues that were driving the progressive movement in general, the eugenics movement in the U.S. focused on identifying, sequestering and even sterilizing people who were deemed to be "unfit."

A Brief History of Veterinary Medicine

Animals and humans have been living together for centuries, but standardized veterinary care developed over a long period of time in many different places.

William Moulton Marston & the Creation of Wonder Woman

Most people know Wonder Woman as an embodiment of truth and justice, but don't know much about the comic's earlier years or its creator. Marston lived an unconventional life, and in many ways, Wonder Woman was an expression of that life.